I've always thought of going out for cheerleading as an intimidating experience for a teenage girl -- but when 14-year-old Jessica McCartney decided she wanted a spot on the squad, she went for it with complete and total confidence.
Which would be impressive for any high school freshman.
But Jessica isn't any high school freshman. She's a high school freshman with autism.
Who, by the way, also has a black belt in karate. Besides being a cheerleader. And manages to get good grades, too.
No wonder her mother is "exceptionally proud" of Jessica.
This kid completely blows me away!
She's got so much spunk and fire and vision. I love that Jessica got the idea to try out for cheerleading from "high school movies" because all the cheerleaders seemed "popular" and "happy" ... and unlike most 14-year-old girls, she didn't automatically think of "popular" and "happy" as unattainable goals.
Jessica McCartney believes in herself, and that's a much more powerful quality than any challenge she'll ever face.
I can't wait to see what she does next!
What impresses you about Jessica McCartney the most?
Image via huffingtonpost/abc